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Full text of "The big trees of California, their history and characteristics"

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lOCT 2 8 1997 
MAR 2^98 




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THE BIG TREES 
OF CALIFORNIA 



THEIR HISTORY AND 
CHARACTERISTICS 



By GALEN CLARK 

Discoverer of the Mariposa Grove of Big Trees, Author of "Indians 

of the Yosemite," and for many years Guardian 

of the Yosemite Valley 



Illustrated from Photographs 



YOSEMITE VALLEY. CALIFORNIA 

GALEN CLARK 

1907 



Copyright. 1907 
By Galen Clark 



Vrtsa of 

^Reflex Publishing Co. 

Redondo, Ca!. 



CONTENTS 



Page. 

ORIGIN OF THE BIG TREES 19 

DISTRIBUTION OF THE BIG TREES 25 

THE MARIPOSA GROVE 31 

GENERAL GRANT AND SEQUOIA NATIONAL 

PARKS 37 

SIZE OF THE BIG TREES 43 

AGE OF THE SEQUOIAS 49 

HABITS AND CHARACTERISTICS '>! 

CONES AND SEEDS 67 

YOUNG SEQUOIAS 77 

CELEBRATED SPECIMENS SI 

A SOLITARY SURVIVOR 9' 

OTHER CELEBRATED TREES 99 

BOTANICAL NOMENCLATURE 10:3 




Photof/rapJi hy Siceeney. 

GENERAL GRANT TREE, GENERAL GRANT 

NATIONAL PARK. 

Claimed to be the largest tree in the world. 



ILLUSTRATIONS 



Page. 

GALEN CLARK Frontispiece 

GENERAL GRANT TREE 9 

GRIZZLY GIANT 15 

DANCING PAVILION, CALAVERAS GROVE 21 

ILLINOIS TREE, TUOLUMNE GROVE 27 

GUARDIAN'S CABIN, MARIPOSA GROVE 33 

GENERAL GRANT TREE 39 

IN THE MERCED GROVE 45 

GENERAL SHERMAN TREE 51 

MOTHER OF THE FOREST 55 

EMPIRE STATE TREE, CALAVERAS GROVE 59 

FOUR GUARDSMEN 65 

CONES AND FOLIAGE 69 

FALLEN MONARCH 73 

YOUNG SEQUOIA 79 

WAWONA TREE 83 

GRIZZLY GIANT 87 

WAWONA HOTEL AND COTTAGES 93 

BOOLE TREE, KING'S RIVER GROVE 97 

DEAD GIANT, TUOLUMNE GROVE 101 



PROLOGUE 



"I have been to the woods, I have trod the green dell, 
And the spirit of beauty was there; 

I saw her white form in the snowdrop's white bell, 
I heard her soft voice in the air. 

She danced in the aspen, she sighed in the gale, 
She wept in the shower, she blushed in the vale; 

Her mantle was thrown o'er the misty brake; 
Her splendor shown in the sparkling lake. 

I felt her breath in the breezes of even, 

Her robe floated over the blue vault of heaven. 

Wherever I roved over vale, wood or hill. 
The spirit of beauty would follow me still. 

Not a wildbriar rose its fragrance breathed. 
Not an elm its clustering foliage wreathed. 

Not a viotet opened its eyes of blue. 
Not a plant or flower in the valley grew. 

Not an ivy caressing the rock in the wall, 
But the spirit of beauty was over them all." 



And I've been to the groves of Sequoia Big Trees, 
Where beauty and grandeur combine, 

Grand Temples of Nature for worship and ease, 
Enchanting, inspiring, sublime I 



'■■'t'M 



»»>■;* 



^fm ^ 






15 



Photograph hit Rdchel. 

GRIZZLY GIANT, MARIPOSA GROVE. 

Height, 224 feet; circumference of limb 100 feet from 

ground, 20 14 feet. 




^- 



The BIG TREES 
of CALIFORNIA 



'T'HE Big Trees of California 
''• ( SequoiaWashingtoniana) 
are located on the western 
slope of the Sierra Nevada 
Mountains, near a central line 
between the summit peaks and 
the foot hills of the range, at 
an average elevation above sea 
level of about 6,500 feet, and 
distributed north and south 
for a distance of about two 
hundred and fifty miles. 

They are found in groups or 
groves closely associated with 

—17— 




il 



'-;& 



U 



other forest trees, mostly pines 
and firs, with intervening 
spaces of greater or less ex- 
tent between groves. Very 
rarely is a solitary tree found 
far away from its kindred 
groups. 

Possibly these trees existed 
at one time in a great contin- 
uous forest, which has been 
divided into the present sepa- 
rate groves by the great 
glaciers which eroded the deep 
canyons on the western face 
of the mountain range, such as 
the Tuolumne Canyon, the 
Yo Semite Valley, Kings River 
Canvon and others. 



4 



^ 





Origin of the Big Trees. 




HTHE present Big Sequoias, 
-■■ now only found in a few 
limited groves in California, 
are regarded by scientists as 
the scanty and sole survivors, 
with but slight variation, of an 
ancient order of forest trees 
which flourished extensively 
during the cretaceous and ter- 
tiary periods of the earth's 
life, contemporaneous with 
such huge animals as the 
dinotherium, megatherium, 
mammoth, and monster rep- 
tiles long since extinct. 
In that remote period prob- 

—19— 





V 

1^ ably the climatic conditions 

^ were more favorable for exten- 

nL;, sive distribution of these trees 

^-r than at present. Fossil re- 

^" mains of this species are said 

to have been found in the 

northern hemisphere on three 

continents, Europe, Asia and 

, America. There now seems to , 

i i 

^.": be no good reason why these ^ 

Big Trees in California should 

become extinct for many cen- 

.-3 turies yet to come, if properly 

.^r;*"] guarded and protected from 

'S':*'^ the ruthless axes and saws of 

lumbermen. 

Californians as a mass have 

not yet fully realized the great 

value to the State of this mag- 

—20— 




r' 



nificent endowment of Nature, 
one of her most precious crown 
jewels, which aids in attracting 
thousands of visitors and mil- 
lions of dollars annuallv. 



W... 




A 




% 



Distribution of the Big Trees. 



t 



T 



HE most northerly group 
of Big Trees consists of a ^i^g" 



few trees in Placer County, on 
a tributary of the American 
Eiver, none of which is of 
i. large dimensions. 

The next grove south is the 
Mammoth or Calaveras Grove, 
in Calaveras County. This 
grove was the first to be dis- 
covered and made known to 
the public. It contains about 
one hundred trees, some of 
which are of very large dimen- 
sions. The grove known as 

—25— 




the South Calaveras Grove is 
about eight miles distant, in 
Stanislaus County, containing 
about one thousand trees. 
These two groves are now 
owned by a lumber company. 
In Tuolumne County, on a 
small tributary of the South 
,; Fork of the Tuolumne River, 

1^. there is a small grove known 

as the Tuolumne Grove, in 
which are some very large fine 
trees. The Big Oak Flat & 
Yo Semite stage road passes 
^' : ^ through this grove. 
/■/ A few miles southwest of the 

Tuolumne Grove, on Moss Can- 
yon Creek, in Mariposa Coun- 
ty, there is a small grove 

—26— 




ritotofjujijh hy Fiske. 

ILLINOIS TREE, TUOLUMNE GROVE. 
Diameter, 28 feet. 




w^ 



known as the Merced Grove, 
which also has some fine speci- 
mens. The Coulterville & Yo- 
semite stage road passes 
through this grove. i. 



L 



?^ 




The Mariposa Gkove. 



T^HE next grove south is the 
* Mariposa Grove, in Mari- 
posa County, located between 
three and four miles southeast 
of Wawona. The grove is situ- 
ated in a depression on a moun- 
tain ridge on the head waters 
of a branch of Big Creek, 
which empties into the south 
fork of the Merced River, near 
Wawona. Wawona is the head- 
quarters of the Yosemite Stage 
& Turnpike Company, on the 
stage routes from Raymond 
and Mariposa to Yosemite Val- 
ley. 

—31— 




^^t^ 



^ 



The Mariposa Grove is easy 
of access by carriage road, and 
5?' contains six hundred trees, 
some of them being among the 
largest in the State. In the 
main portion of the grove the 
road makes a wide loop, so that 
many of the largest trees may 
be seen from the carriage. This 
grove, including four square 
miles of territory, was ceded to 
the State of California in trust 
as a public park in June, 1864, 
by the same Act of Congress 
that ceded the Yosemite Valley 
to the State under similar con- 
ditions. This grove of Big 
i Trees has since been under the 

¥ protection and management of 

—32— 










the Yosemite Commissioners, 
and is the only grove of Big 
Trees in the State which is en- 
tirely free from private claims. 
Together with the Yosemite 
Valley it has recently been re- 
ceded by the State of Califor- 
nia to the National Govern- 
ment. 

About ten miles nearly south- 
east of the Mariposa Grove, in 
Madera County, there is an- 
other grove of Big Trees, on a 
small north branch of the 
Fresno River. This grove was 
named the Fresno Grove, as it 
was then in Fresno County, 
and when first discovered in 
1857 contained about six hun- 

—35— 





dred trees, one of the largest 
measuring eighty- three feet in 
circumference four feet above 
the ground. A large number 
of these trees have now been 
cut down and sawed into lum- 
ber. 

Still further south is a small 
grove in Fresno County on 
Dinky Creek, a tributary of 
Kings River from the north. 




Genekal Grant and Sequoia 
National Parks. 



O OUTH of the south fork of 
*^ Kings Eiver, in Fresno ' 
County, there commences an 
extensive belt or forest of Se- ^4, 
quoias, three or four miles in ' 

width, and extending south 
across Tulare County nearly 
to the north boundary of Kern 
County for a distance of over 
sixty miles, with but small 
breaks caused by deep canyons. 
This extensive area has been 
divided by some writers into 
different local groves. That 
portion in Fresno County is 
—37— — . 



I 




v^ 



known as the Kings River 
Grove, and also the Fresno 
Grove. Proceeding south, we 
find the Kaweah Grove, and 
Tule River Groves (North 
Fork and South Fork) in the 
basins of Kaweah and Tule 
Eivers respectively. 

Two public parks have been 
established by the Federal 
Government in this extensive 
-Sequoia forest, — the General 
Grant National Park, four 
square miles in extent, in the 
Kings River Grove, and the 
Sequoia National Park, con- 
taining two hundred and fifty 
square miles, in the Kaweah 
River Grove. These Parks, to- 

—38— 



.,. ^,^a g feL 



'iXf' 




gether with the Yosemite Na- 
tional Park, are guarded every 
sumraer season by detachments 
of United States cavalry. :#. 

In every grove of Big Se- 
quoias in the State, except the 
small group in Placer County, 
there are to be found some fine 
large specimens of these | 

grandest of forest trees. Per- ^ 
sons who are able to visit only 
one of the smaller groves can 
get a good idea of the general 
appearance and character of 
this species of trees; but the 
larger groves are much more 
interesting and impressive in 
their awe-inspiring grandeur. 



• 1 

-41— ]i 



,^ 






Size of the Big Trees. 



T 




HE average height of the 
large sized Sequoias is 
about two hundred and sev- 
enty-five feet, though some cV 
few have been found to exceed 
three hundred and twenty-five 
feet in height. Their aver- 
age diameter at the ground is , 
about twenty feet, though in / 
nearly every grove there are 
some which exceed thirty feet 
in diameter. The difference of 
a few feet, however, in the \ 
\fi^ diameter of the largest trees, 
is not perceptible to the eye, 
and only by actual measure- 

-43- J 




ment can such variations be 
ascertained. 

The first impression, when 
viewing the largest of these 
trees, may be one of dis- 
appointment. The body of the 
tree being round, and very 
symmetrical in form and 
height, its size is somewhat 
deceptive. But when some 
familiar object, such as a per- 
son or a horse, is placed along- 
side the tree, the illusion is 
Q quickly dispelled. 

Another cause of this occa- 
sional sense of disappointment 
is caused by the fact that most 
of the measurements published 
are taken at the base of the 

—44— 



"H 

^v,.^ 




riiotdf/raifli hi/ Hallctt-Taiflor Co. 

IN THE MERCED GROVE. 



^ 



tree near the ground, which is 
larger than the body of the 
tree a few feet above. Persons 
taking measurements for pub- 
lication should state whether 
taken near the ground or how 
many feet up. 



\H 



^•^r ^f0^ 



1^- 

n 



C'A Age of the Sequolvs. 



^?v 



T 



HE extreme age attained \ ; 
by some of the Big Trees ^ 
will ever be an unsettled ques- 
tion. In examining the re- '4 
mains of fallen trees, the an- J 
nual ring growth varies very ^^ 
much in different specimens, 
some of them averaging many 
more rings to the inch than 
others, according to variations 
in local conditions, whether 
favorable to a vigorous growth 
or not. The number of rings 
•^_ near the heart of the largest 
^'' old fallen trees examined, aver- 






age about ten to the inch. Near 
the outside surface they aver- 
age fifty or more to the inch. 

In the pickets of the fence 
which now surrounds the Gen- 
eral Sherman tree in the Se- 
quoia National Park, made 
from an old fallen tree in the 
near vicinity, those examined 
by myself and others present 
had fifty rings to the inch. 
This would make an increase 
of two inches in the diameter 
of the wood part of the tree in 
fifty years. The outside sap 
wood of the tree undoubtedly 
had over sixty rings to the 
inch. Apparently some of the 
largest old fallen trees, like the 

—50— 







i.»/ 



^'''■' Forest Giant in the Mariposa 
Grove, may have attained the 
age of over six thousand years 
before they were uprooted. 
:.r Many of the largest old trees 
I in all the groves have been 
badly injured by fire. This is 
- ;, more evident in the northern 
groves than in those south of 
^ Kings River. In the Sequoia 
National Park there is no evi- 
dence that any extensive fires 
have spread through the forest 
^, for the past one hundred or 
* ./ more years. There is such a 
^^ dense growth of green vegeta- 
tion covering the ground where 
most of the Sequoias grow, 
that fires cannot now spread 

sufficiently to do much damage. 

,1. 

—53— 





MOTHER OF THE FOREST, CALAVERAS GROVE. 

Diameter 32 feet; height 325 feet. The bark was re* 
moved for the Paris Exposition of 1860. 



V- 



Habits and Characteristics. 



T 




'<^ 



HE Big Tree is an ever- ^ 
green, and is the largest 
and scarcest of all forest trees. 
Its foliage is very short, about 
one-fourth of an inch in length, 
5 ovate-acuminate in form, and 

^. scale-like, adhering closely to 

the small branchlets. In young 
trees the leaves are about half 
^J an inch in length, very narrow ^ 
and sharp-pointed, linear-Ian- '^ 
ceolate, lying closely to the 
slender twigs, pointing for- 
ward. 

In young trees, during their :.,]^ 
^ first two or three centuries of 

—57— 




%!ry 



r 



y 



life, the tapering body is thick- 
ly covered with slender 
branches, which are erect and 
aspiring above, to catch the 
electric ether from the atmos- 
phere, which is one of their 
most vital sources of life ; hori- 
zontal near the middle of the 
tree, and drooping below, from 
the heavy weight of winter 
snows and lack of nourish- 
ment. As the tree enlarges in 
size the lower branches die and 
fall away, leaving the body of 
the tree bare for one hundred 
feet or more up. 

The tops of the younger 
medium-sized trees develop in- 
to a graceful dome form in out- 

—58— -. 




-A 



^ 








EMPIRE STATE TREE. 
Calaveras Grove. 






line, but on many of the largest 
old trees the top branches have 
been broken down by the heavy 
weight of snow in winter and 
great wind storms. 

Throughout all the different 
groves, the Sequoias seem to 
have naturally arranged them- 
selves into family groups and 
social clusters, selecting choice 
localities where the soil is most 
suitable and well supplied with 
their favorite condition of 
moisture, of which they require 
a much greater quantity than 
the large pine and other forest 
trees. Their majestic, grace- 
ful beauty is unequalled. Since 
their discovery they have be- 




■# 





#' 



come one of the great wonders 
of the world. The bright cin- 
namon color of their immense 
fluted trunks, in strong con- 
trast to the green foliage and 
dark hues of the surrounding 
forest, makes them all the more 
conspicuous and impressive. 
In their sublime presence a 
person is apt to be filled with a 
sense of awe and veneration, 
as if treading on hallowed 
groimd. 

In the growth of the tree 
there is an annual inside new 
thin growth of bark formed in 
contact with the new outside 
annual ring growth of wood. 
The parting of the old outside 

—62— 






^,, bark into ridges is caused by 
^ the gradual increase in the size 
of the tree inside the bark. 

The color of the bark grad- 
ually changes from a dark pur- 
ple tint to a cinnamon color, 
and becomes corrugated into 
I, narrow vertical ridges. On 

^ ^ full grown trees, where well 
sheltered and protected from 
fierce storms, these ridges of 
bark are sometimes found two 
feet in thickness, in rare in- 
J^^ stances three feet. The aver- 
^^-'? age thickness is probably about 
y fifteen inches, and, where open- 
/ ly exposed to storms, still less. 



^ 



#. 



i 



—63— 




FOUR GUARDSMEN, MARIPOSA GROVE. 



F 



:^ ^^^^^ ■^^' ■ <^ 



Coxes axd Seeds. 



•T^HE cones or fruit of the 
"*' tree average about the size 
of a hen's ^^%. It takes two 
years for the seeds to mature 
in the cones, which they do 
late in the fall, although the 
cones do not dry and shrink 
so as to shed the seeds until 
the third season. The seeds 
are of a light golden color, --§ 
small and flat, about the size 
and shape of a parsnip seed. 

The seeds have no wing ap- 
^^ pendage like those of the pines ; 

and firs, only a blank margin ^ 

-67- .J 



^/ 



;^»^/ d 



VJ 



•4 



of shell on each side, a little 
wider than the vital germ in 
the center. There is a small 
amount of purple-colored gum 
about the seeds in the cone, 
which falls out in dust with the 
seeds when they drop. This 
gum is of the same character 
as that which exudes from the 
body of the tree where it has j 
been deeply burned, and is ^ 
readily soluble in water. 

An analysis of this gum at 
the United States Department 
of Agriculture, Bureau of ? 
Chemistry, gives the following 
result: 

Per Cent 

Moisture at 100° 12.79 

Wood Scrap 81 

Tannin 34.63 

Nontannin 51 . 77 

—68— 



f 




riiotixintph bij Sueenfii. 

CONES AND FOLIAGE OF THE BIG TREES. 



fry' ''-■'' 



Professor H. W. Wiley, 
Chief of the Bureau, says; 
**The material possesses none 
of the physical nor chemical 
properties of wood gums ; it is 
optically inactive, non-cohesive 
and contains neither glucosides 
nor pentosans. The non-tan- 
nins are chiefly protocatechuic 
acid with smaller amounts of 
catechol, gallic acid, etc. The 
tannin is largely a catechol 
tannin, although some gallo- 
tannic acid is present. The 
material is interesting, not on- 
ly in containing a large per- 
centage of tannin, but also be- 
cause it contains so little of 
the insoluble decomposition 



•71— 



y^' 



/ 



^^ products of catechol tannin." 
1^ The material gave 3.60 per 
1^ <3ent. of ash which contained : 

Percent 

Calcium oxid (Cao) .11.22 

IMagnesium oxid (Mgo) 8.33 

Potassium oxid (K^O) 50.00 

Sodium oxid (NasO) 1.25 

''2 ^ Phosphoric acid (P.O5 ) Trac^ 

\ 

^ This gum is not inflamma- 

ble, like resinous gums, but 
strongly resists the action of 
,i^ fire. Whether in its fluid 
vp^j state in the body of the tree it 
'-^'1 aids in sustaining the tree's 
vitality against destructive 
elements, is not certainly 
known, but probably is true. 
^^ It undoubtedly gives the red 

/■/' -72- 







Kf ^ 


HPgl^^^^^H 














^Bl -^^^u^^ 



73 



1'^ 






color to the wood inside of the ^ 
thin white sap wood next to 
the bark. 



U.'. 







/. 






>#^^ 




Young Sequoias 



THEEE are but very few 
young Sequoias to be seen 
in any of the groves. This is 
not the fault of the seeds. The 
surface of the ground in the 
groves is so deeply covered 
with the dry fallen matter 
from the trees, and dead veg- 
etation, that the seeds in fall- 
ing very seldom come in con- 
tact with the bare ground ; but 
where a tree has been recently 
uprooted, or where fire has 
burned away the dry covering, 
the young trees spring up as 
thick as grain in a field, and 

—77— 



only need proper protection 
for some of them to continue 
to grow. 

Groves of young Sequoia 
trees can readily be started 
anywhere on suitable moist 
ground in the forests of Cali- 
fornia, at an elevation of less 
than 7,000 feet above sea level, 
by burning off the dry rubbish 
covering the ground and plant- 
ing good seed. 

There is a large amount of 
worthless Big Tree seed in the 
market. To test the seeds when 
buying, break some of them 
crosswise. If the vital germ 
in the center is white, the seed 
is good; if brown, it is worth- 
less. 

—78— 








PhotO(jru})}i 1)11 liiijism. 79 

YOUNG SEQUOIA, MAltlPuSA GROVE. 
Base diameter, 17 feet. Age about 1000 years. 




Celebrated Specimens. 





A MONG all the largest Se- 
^**' quoia trees known in Cal- 
ifornia, the trees named Gen- 
^eral Grant in the General 
Grant National Park, the Gen- 
eral Sherman in the Sequoia 
National Park, and the Grizzly 
Giant in the Mariposa Grove, 
are perhaps the most notedly 
distinguished, although there 
are many others which are 
very close rivals. 

In the General Grant Na- 
tional Park, the tree named 
General Grant is said to have 

—81— 




a base diameter of forty feet. 
It is enclosed with a picket 
fence, and no one is allowed 
inside the fence to take meas- 
urements. It is claimed by 
some persons to be the largest 
tree in the State, but a few 
feet above its wide-spreading 
base near the ground, the main 
body of the tree does not ap- 
pear to be any larger than 
some others in the near vi- 
cinity. 

The tree named General 
Sherman in the Sequoia Na- 
tional Park has a base circum- 
ference near the ground of one 
hundred and two feet. Five 
^ feet above, it measures eighty- 

—82— 




Photograph hy Boysm. 

WAWONA TREE, MARIPOSA GROVE. 

Diameter, 28 feet; height, 260 feet; measured by Hon. 

B. M. Leitch, Guardian of the Grove. 



-^ 



four and one-half feet. Fif- 
teen feet above, its circumfer- 
ence is seventy-two and one- 
half feet. Its height is two 
hundred and eighty-five feet. 
The body of the tree tapers 
but very little for one hun- 
dred feet or more up. Its 
elevation above sea level, as 
reported by the United States 
Oeological Survey, is 6,852 
feet. It is a splendid tree, and 
probably contains more solid 
cubic feet of wood than any 
other known tree in California. 

The Grizzly Giant is the 
acknowledged patriarch of the 
Mariposa Grove of Sequoias. 
It is not so tall and graceful 



>r 



m. 




^ii^,. 



If^ 



in general outline, nor is it& 
cubical contents as great as 
some other trees in the grove. 
It is located on more comiDara- 
tively open and dry ground, 
and has a unique individuality 
of majestic grandeur all its 
own, different from any other 
known Sequoia. It has been 
very badly injured by fires 
during unknown past centuries, 
leaving only four narrow 
strips of sapwood conecting^ 
with its roots. Many of its 
top branches have been broken 
down by the weight of heavy 
winter snows and fierce gales 
of wind. One of its large 
branches, one hundred feet 

—86— 







rhotoijruph fill Fisir 

GRIZZLY GIANT, MARIPOSA GROVE. 
Circumference at base, 104 feet. 




.^^ ^^#; 




wy 



above the ground, is six feet 
and seven inches in diameter, 
as measured by surveyor's 
transit. Its present base cir- 
cumference is ninety-three feet 
without making any allowance 
for the large part burned away, 
which if done would increase it 
to over one hundred feet. 

As a result of the great in- 
juries it has sustained from 
the destructive elements and 
lack of moisture in the ground 
during the past few centuries, 
the wood growth has been very 
slow, the annual ring increase 
being as thin as wrapping pa- 
per, too fine to be counted with 
the unaided eve. The inside 



Mc 




1 




« 






growth, of bark has been equal- 
ly slow, and has not been equal 
to the wear and disintegration 

^^1 on the outside by the elements. 

"[^^ ^ The bark is now worn down 

smooth and very thin, and 

probably the tree does not now 

1^' measure as much in circumf er- 

f ence as it did several centuries 

«jp ago. According to the best 

estimates made by the examin- 
ation of the annual ring 
x^ growths in some of the re- 
mains of old fallen Sequoias, 
the Grizzly Giant must be not 
less than six thousand years 
old, yet still living, grizzled 
with age, defying old Time 
with his legions of furies which 

—90— 



have shattered its royal crown, 
stripped its body nearly bare, 
and cut off its main source of 
nutriment. Dying for centu- 
ries, yet still standing at bay, 
it is probably not only the old- 
est living tree, but also the 
oldest living thing on earth. 



.^ 



—91— 



=<^ iw. ' . ; rtj ^t'?*" 




;-*! ^^'ij^^(^ 



A SOLITAEY SURVIVOK. 



nPHE Big Tree named Boole^ 
left standing in the Sanger 
Lumber Company's logging- 
camp, is a close rival in size 
to any other of the largest 
trees in California. It has a 
base circumference of a little 
over one hundred feet. But 
since its strong bodyguard of 
surrounding forest trees, which 
have protected it from its in- 
fancy, have all been slaughter- 
ed for the saw mills, and it is 
left standing alone, its own 
colossal size becomes its great- 

—95— 






4r 



^v^o1f;^■ 



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est weakness, and it must soon 
succumb to the tempests which 
occasionally sweep through 
the mountain forests. 



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-96— 




J'hotofjraph htf Sweeney . 91 

THE BOOLE TREE, KINGS RIVER GROVE. 

Sang-er Lumber Company's Camp. 

Circumference at base, 106 feet. 



:^^ 



Other Celebeated Trees. 



TTHEEE are two trees in the 
*■• Mariposa Grove which 
have driveways cut through 
them, one being known as the 
Wawona Tree, twenty-eight 
feet in diameter, and the other 
as the California, twenty-one 
feet in diameter. These trees 
had been burned to such an ex- 
tent that widening out the 
passage for stages did not in- 
jure the roots or vitality, and 
cannot properly be termed an 
act of spoliation or vandalism. 
A ride through these trees in a 

—99— 



M 





six-horse stage, or any convey- 
ance, is a great novelty and 
should not be missed. 

There is also a carriage road 
cut through the Dead Giant in 
the Tuolumne Grove, and 
through the tree Pioneer in the 
Calaveras Grove. 



i 




—100— 




Botanical Nomenclature. 






i: 



T^HE selection of a correct 
"■• botanical name for the Big 
Trees has been a subject of 
much controversy among the 
best authorities, and still re- 
mains an open question. Since 
first discovered the species has 
received several different 
names from eminent botanists, 
the .most noted ones being the 
following : 

Wellingtonia Gigantea - - Lindley, 1853 
Sequoia Gigantea - - - Decaisne, 1854 
Taxodium Washingtonianum— 

Winslow, 1854 
Sequoia Wellingtonia - - Seaman, 1855 
Sequoia Washingtoniana— 

Winslow and Sudworth, 



■103— 






vi 




^^^ 



A large majority of botan- 
ists now agree upon the name 
Sequoia Washingtoniana as 
being the correct one. 

A near relative of the Se- 
quoia Washingtoniana is the 
Sequoia Sempervirens, the 
Kedwood of the Coast Eange 
of mountains. This tree flour- 
ishes best in the moist atmos- 
phere and fogs from the Pa- 
cific Ocean, while the Sequoia 
Washingtoniana prefers the 
pure exhilerating atmosphere 
of the high Sierras. The name 
Sequoia is supposed to be de- 
rived from Sequoia (or Se- 
quoyah), a Cherokee Indian 
of mixed blood, who invented 
an alphabet and written lan- 
guage for his tribe. 

—104— 






1 



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